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News/Business. Hari Sreenivasan. (2013) Some 400 businesses in Massachusetts use Berkshire County's own currency. New. (CC) (Stereo)

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PBS

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00:31:00

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TV-MA

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San Francisco, CA, USA

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Channel v709

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mpeg2video

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ac3

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1920

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1080

TOPIC FREQUENCY

Iran 6, America 3, Alice 3, Nelson Mandela 3, U.s. 3, South Africa 3, U.n. 3, Burke 2, Berkshire 2, Brian Butterworth 2, France 2, Mandela 2, David Albright 1, Paul Solomon 1, Massachusetts 1, Allison Stewart 1, Washington 1, Alex Stewart 1, Curren 1, Carlos Santana 1,
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  PBS    PBS News Hour Weekend    News/Business. Hari Sreenivasan.  (2013) Some 400 businesses  
   in Massachusetts use Berkshire County's own currency. New....  

    December 8, 2013
    5:30 - 6:01pm PST  

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december 8, president praises the interim deal as u.n. inspectors visit a key site that has been offlimits for years. we will look at how nelson mandela used sports to transform south africa. and printing their own money. >> it's good for our country to keep manufacturing here. it is about shopping local. >> next on "pbs news hour weekend." >> "pbs news hour weekend" is
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made possible by -- corporate funding provided by mutual of america designing customized, individual and group retirement products. that's why we're your retirement company. additional support is provided by -- and by the corporation for public broadcasting and contributions to your public broadcast station from viewers like you. good evening. i'm alex stewart. hari sreenivasan is off. last month america's leading power took a deal with iran. now the fall between iran and
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the west appears to be continuing. today for the first time in years iran allowed international inspectors to visit a key nuclear site where a reactor to produce heavy water is under construction. heavy water can be used to make plutonium for a nuclear weapon. in a speech today iranian president sought to reaassure hard liners in his country that last month's deal is already benefitting iran. >> translator: cruel sanctions against the islamic republic has caused recessions in the economy. the first phase in talks has led to economic successes. >> israeli president was asked if he would be willing to meet with rouhani. >> why not? i don't have enemies. we don't consider iran as an enemy.
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>> yesterday president obama down played expectations of a bigger long-term deal with iran regarding its nuclear program but says negotiations are worth the effort. >> we have to not constantly assume that it's not possible for iran, like any country, to change over time. i wouldn't say it is more than 50/50 but we have to try. >> neighboring iraq today there was another series of fatal bombings. authorities say at least 45 people were killed and dozens wounded after a series of explosions. the violence is worse than at any time since 2006 when the country was on the verge of civil war. in ukraine today protesters topples and beheaded a statue
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part of a much largerer demonstration. they are demanding that the government move ahead with a deal to deepen ties to the west. the plan angered russia to the east. back in this country the huge storm that caused major power outages in texas has moved eastward. a spokes woman for emergency management in virginia warned of what she called a historic ice event. the storm sent snow to philadelphia. a catholic high school reportedly has fired one of its teachers, an openly gay man, after he applied for a new jersey license to wed his partner. a distant reminder of world war ii. an unexploded one-ton german
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bomb was uncovered 20 feet under the ground at a construction site in serbia. it was removed from the scene and destroyed. now return to iran where u.n. inspectors visited a site used to produce plutonium that could be used in a nuclear weapon. we are joined in washington by david albright. he is a leading expert. the inspectors are visiting a heavy water production plant. what are they looking for specifically at this plant? >> this is a visit by the inspectors. so they are looking for very simple things. is the plant operational? how much heavy water has it made? they will try to find out what its purpose is, i would imagine. iran has said it has made enough heavy water for the adjacent
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heavy water production reactor. so why does it need to operate the heavy water production plant? is it going to export it? is it planning to build more heavy water reactors. the plant is part of the two facilities including the reactorer that u.n. security council resolutions have asked to have operations suspended. what that means is that this plant is also on the list of plants that the united states is likely going to want to see shut down if there is a final deal with iran. and this kind of visit creates a baseline of what is going on there and it will help establish where the plant is needed. >> today is a one day event at one place. ultimately, how many inspections will take place? >> for the agenda of the agency this is a small, important step. they will have to visit
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military-related sites related to past and on going work. the site has a facility that is linked to old work on nuclear weapons. and int that period of denial iran has essentially rebuilt the site and it will make the job harderer to verify what happened there in the past. and that means they will want to talk to people and go to other sites that have been linked to nuclear weaponization allegations. it is going to be a long difficult process and will depend on iran cooperating with the inspectors. >> what is the likelihood of iran concealing the nuclear program? >> i don't think it has done a very good job. the evidence assembled for many member states is they had a nuclear weapons program in the past and parts of it may have continued. the problem is iran absolutely
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denies it, calls the information fabricated, misinterpreted and has taken the position they have never had a nuclear weapons program. i think the evidence is pretty good and iran will have to change its approach and start to address the concern. it can do it in secret. this doesn't have to be a public discussion. there are many ways for iran to, in a sense, come clean and address the concerns. it can't escape it. it will absolutely have to address the concerns. and the recent joint plan of action negotiated reiterates that the concerns will have to be addressed if there is going to be a final deal. >> how much is today's inspection a gesture or a test of iran's cooperation going forward? >> i think it is a good gesture by iran. they haven't allowed the inspectors into the plant since
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2011. the visit beforet that was in 2005. i think it is a good gesture by iran and sets up what you have to look at as a very difficult process but a positive process in that iran appears to be willing to open up. it is going to be sorely tested in the next several months. you have to view today's success as giving hope for the future. >> thank you so much. >> thank you. in south africa today tens of thousands of black and white south africans took part in a national day of prayer and reflection to honor nelson
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mandela, their former president and antiapartheid activist who died thursday. nelson mandela understood that one of the nation's most popular sports, rugby, could play a big role in bridging south africa's racial divide. >> rugby was also divisive, a symbol of apartheid. to mandela it was an opportunity. it was just a year into his presidency. no one expected him to don the green and gold of the jersey. just listen to the reaction of the crowd, a white rugby crowd. and when south africa beat the
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country celebrated as one. the victory parade roared unprecedented unity. >> this achievement has united the whole nation. and what happened in which more than 100,000 people participated. [ inaudible ] this event has united the entire country. >> reporter: mandela's manipulation of sport to build a nation was though accident. in the week leading up to the scenes knowing white still steered him the country's first black president flew to the team training camp and moments before the final he would visit them in their dressing room to say good luck. >> it is exciting. standing inside and photographs with the president. we respect him as a great
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leader. tomorrow we know one guy in the stand to play for and that is the president. >> before they went to the field i went to their dressing room and i told them that the whole country was behind them and they must go to the field fully motivated knowing that they will bring glory to south africa. >> reporter: in those heavy few days so much changed. sports for mandela did something nothing else could, and he knew it. . with so much of what we buy
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now manufactured overseas, many americans are trying to find ways to support the u.s. economy by buying american-made goods. some are taking it a step furtherer. in massachusetts as discovered last summer people are trying to boost local businesses by using local currency. this segment originally aired in september. >> reporter: the berkshire mountains of western massachusetts home to the historic inn operating since 1773 back when the tab might have been settled with continentals, revolutionary currency. 240 years laterer i can pay by united states dollar, of course, or credit card. >> what is my bill? >> right now you have an outstanding balance of $148.10. >> reporter: the inn offers
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another option. i'm going to get shares to pay with. burke shares, an alternative local currency born in 2006 and now accepted by some 400 businesses. the process begins at five area ba banks. among them the banks have about a million in their vault circulated when someone like me steps up to the window. can i trade dollars for berk shares here? no fuss, no muss and you buy them at a five percent discount getting 105 berk shares for every $100. for my $700 to cover our crew costs for several nights at the
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inn, 735 berk shares. and you get a discount at every place that accepts the local currency because at the bank it takes 105 berk shares to buy back $100. >> it is a way to keep money within the community. >> reporter: brian butterworth is the red lion inn's director of sales. >> we don't make money or lose anything. >> reporter: i got a 5% discount. that is not good for the inn. >> we spend them as u.s. dollars and it stays in our community because there is a geographic limit to where you can use them. >> reporter: the limit is about ten miles outside of the county borders. alice runs the program out of
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the center. she admits small can also be parochial. >> you can see local currency as isolationist. >> reporter: protectionist. she hardly sees it represents a threat to global trade. >> we used to have local currencies everywhere. that is what we would like to see again is regional currencies that work for their region and then a national currency. >> reporter: in a remarkable apt application of the phrase -- in france [ speaking foreign language ] while thinking globally we were acting locally
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and more interested in the curren currency of berkshire county. first stop the magic flute, a local ukulele manufacturer. >> we took the trees down and kiln dry the wood. >> reporter: co-owner a woman some might describe as from an earlier era. >> we have been able to find wood. and in our new violin we use an injection molder here. >> reporter: the magic flute pays in berk shares for the parts to make the instruments. >> we sell all over the world but hire local people. it is good for our country to keep manufacturing here. it's about community, support, shopping local. it's about sustainability where we live and work.
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>> reporter: the berkshires are known for a certain lifestyle which attracts cosmopolitan locals. >> it took me ten years to move here full time. >> reporter: a native of the south of france used to be a fashion editor, now runs his own gourmet shop. >> we take berk shares from our customers when they purchase food or items off the shelf. and we also pay some of them locally with berk shares. >> reporter: is it more a political act or self-interest act in the sense that you get more business if there are more people circulating or owning berk shares? >> it is a bit of both. we try to operate local industries and put a stop to big
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stores coming in and not having the same effect when they do business here as a smaller enterprise would. in that sense it is political. >> reporter: i assume you mean liberal political or left wing. is that fair? >> yes it is fair. left wing, maybe. liberal, yes. >> reporter: so it went everywhere we visited at establishments doing business with berk shares since day one and with recent convertst that alice was just signing up. >> i signed up for berk shares today. i think it is a beautiful thing. >> reporter: a liberal dream come true? this isn't partisan says brian butterworth, a republican. >> also a conservative appeal because of some concerns with the money system as it is right now in the united states.
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>> anything made locally? >> local new england local but not in berkshire county. >> reporter: most of the toys he showed me for my grand kids were made in china. but he sees himself as doing his part to save main street for tourists and locals alike. is berk shares the answer to the threat for retail from the internet and chain stores? >> i would say it is part of the answer. the answer is also to create awareness among people that if they shop online 100% of what they spend goes into the same cyber space that they are sending their order. if they shop at a big box store 65% of what they spend leaves the community. >> reporter: in the end do consumers really care? legend has it the very first
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burke share transaction took place across this counter. >> i went through kind of a shallow time. >> reporter: and alice is working hard to add even more businesses, designing a scheme to issue more berk shares as so-called productive loans to local businesses by fronting them the currency to startup or expand. she also hopes to untie berk shares from the u.s. dollar. >> our goal is to create a currency that holds its value as opposed to a currency like the dollar that is inflating constantly. at that point people will want to use berk shares. >> reporter: and for folks in places like berkshire county the
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hope is that here comes the sun once more. ♪ paul solomon talks with small business owners about berk shares. on the news hour tomorrow on air and online sits down with carlos santana. that is it for this edition of "pbs news hour weekend". i'm allison stewart. thanks for watching.
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"pbs news hour weekend" is made possible by -- corporate funding is provided by mutual of america, designing customized, individual and group retirement products. that's why we're your retirement company. additional support is provided by --
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and by the corporation for public broadcasting and from contributions to your pbs station from viewers like you. thank you.
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